This is the lovely and elegant interior of the Georgian Chapel at Compton Verney, where R and I heard the most wonderful concert this afternoon. The Royal Birmingham Conservatoire Chamber Choir, a group of about two dozen excellent student singers conducted by Paul Spicer, performed a varied programme of Christmas music, from C16th motets through traditional carols to C21st pieces. Everything about their performance was outstanding, and I honestly can’t remember the last time I enjoyed a concert so much.
It’s hard to single out one piece from nearly twenty, but the chant O magnum mysterium by the American composer Morten Lauridsen brought both of us to tears. Sadly I couldn’t find a recording of this choir performing it, but there is a nice version by the Nordic Chamber Choir which is worth seven minutes of your time. The Royal Birmingham Conservatoire Chamber Choir records regularly on Somm Records, and some of their work is on line on their YouTube channel. Honestly though, what I want is for them to record the programme they sang today – I’d buy copies of that CD for every member of my family.
If you get the chance to hear them perform, you should grab it – especially in a setting such as this, where the sound they produce is simply awe-inspiring.